the Little Red Reviewer

Christmas in May

Posted on: May 15, 2016

Books are wonderful little things, and it’s a true bond between two bookish people when one says to the other “I picked out some books I think you might like”.   It’s a special part of your brain that clicks on when you think about “would my friend like this book?”.

My friend Richard, of Tip the Wink, e-mailed me one day and said “I’m sending you a box of books”.  Little did he know the look of glee that appeared on my face when I saw that e-mail.  Someone was sending me books they think I might like? and even better, these were used, pre-loved books.  I’d  be able to say “my friend gave me these”. And I love getting to say that. I’m one of those weirdos who gives additional brownie points to friends who gift me their used books.

A week later, Richard’s box arrived.  It was like Christmas. In May.

that evening, I so very carefully opened it:

(be warned, this is a booknerd unboxing post, full of photos, squeeing, happy, and questions about stuff I’ve heard of but never read. Photos may be slow in loading)

the box_

The squeeing begun right away.  Arthur C. Clarke? Ben Bova? Neal Asher!   So far so good! Let’s see what else is in here…..

Clarke blaylock_

The Other Side of the Sky was published in 1958 and include’s Clarke’s famous short story “The Nine Billion Names of God”, and contains some of the best work of his early career.  This lovely little book is going to get picked up sooner, rather than later, me thinks.

All The Bells on Earth by James P. Blaylock looks like it involves deals with the devil, lucky charms, suburban shenanigans, and satirical gallows humor.  Sounds like my kind of book.

Ben bova_

Yeah!!  Mars books by Ben Bova!  I love stuff like this!  I love it because going to Mars really isn’t that far fetched, I can buy into everything that’s happening. Scifi books that take place on Mars don’t feel so much like ultra far future, they feel more like “when we get there, this is what people might experience”. I won’t be able to help comparing these books to Weir’s The Martian and KSR’s Red Mars.

Asher andrews_

I’m always excited to read more Neal Asher.  I haven’t read a ton of his stuff (and haven’t read Gridlinked), but what I have read of his, I’ve really enjoyed.  I’m pretty sure I’ve read some short stories by Ilona Andrews, but I don’t think I’ve read any of her novels.  I hear a lot of good things, so now I can see what all the fuss is about.

3 fantasy books_

Richard really does know my tastes, I’ve already got a copy of Spiritwalk by Charles de Lint! 😀   Moonscatter by Jo Clayton looks fun, and Alien Art by Dickson has a very bizarre but neat premise. Of this group, the Dickson looks most interesting.

ac crispin_

Starbridge, Silent Dances, and Shadow World, by A.C. Crispin and others look like something I’d buy from a used bookstore based solely on the cover art. These are the first 3 novels in the series, and the premise is we learn we are not alone in the universe. Now we need to learn how to communicate with the other intelligent races in the universe, and learn how to decide if creatures we find on other planets are intelligent or not.  Totally my kind of thing! If the name of the author sounds familier, it’s because A.C. Crispin is famous for her Star Trek and Star Wars tie-in novels.

6 fantasy books_

These books were so shiny they were hard to photograph!  The Seafort Saga by David Feintuch is a military science fiction series following the career of Nicholas Seafort, who starts as a midshipman in the United Nations Naval Service.  Military Scifi isn’t usually for me, but I’ll at least give the first one a try.

Joel rosenberg_

This cover art is a riot!  This is four out of the first five books of Joel Rosenberg’s Guardians of the Flame  series.   The first book in the series came out in 1983, and it follows a bunch of college students who are playing a role playing game and get magically transported to the world of the game, and have to survive.  I’m laughing out loud right now, because a huge trend in anime recently has been “kids wake up in their RPGs, and have to survive!”, shows like Sword Art Online, Grimgar, and Log Horizon.  Rosenberg was doing that back in ’83!   It’ll be interesting to see how these books compare to some of the contemporary animes that have a similar premise

piers Anthony 2_piers Anthony 1_








ok, so I’ve never read any Xanth books before. What do I need to know going in? do I need to start at a certain book?  All I know is that these books are fun, funny, and that there’s a billion of them.


Now I need to think about what Richard might like to have off of my shelves . . .



20 Responses to "Christmas in May"

OMG. That’s a lot!
Hope you enjoy them


I hope I find time to read them! 😀


Oh wow, the Xanth novels are the best! Just be ready for some very bad puns, lol. I still have all my original paperbacks from when they were first released, which look just like yours!


puns are either really good, or really terrible. But i do like me some super light hearted and goofy fantasy from time to time. Totes cool that these are the original paperback printing!!


This is awesome!!!

Liked by 1 person

i know, right? 😀

Liked by 1 person

I love the way you think about receiving books from friends.

Liked by 1 person

doesn’t everyone think this way?

Liked by 1 person

I think some people always like to get brand new ones and don’t care about the history of how it came to be their book. I’m with you though, there is something fun about receiving books from friends.


The Blaylock and the Neal Asher are the best 2 here of the ones I’ve read.A lot of the other books are sub par. Not a fan of Rosenberg, AC Crispin or Feintech. The first few Xanth books are okay but grow tiresome after awhile.


The Asher is at the top of my list. Everything i’ve read by him I’ve liked.


However, THIS friend is in a forced downsizing mode, so needs nothing in return, except an occasional review or remark. I’d suggest, with Xanth you start with Chameleon, and continue as far as you dare.


I could send you an MP3 player preloaded with audio fiction?


No need. If you’re so inclined, you can always pay it forward.


I just threw Guardians of the Flame and the Xanth books on my TBR, because…. I don’t really know! They do look fun! XD


What an awesome assortment of books! Enjoy!!


I love this! It’s so awesome to receive something like this and not only is it great for you but it must be fantastic for your friend sending this to you and knowing how pleased you’ll be. I love book gifts – unfortunately they don’t always work out which is why it’s so great when somebody you know sends you something. It really must have felt like Christmas! Enjoy.
Lynn 😀


Obviously, you’re on Santa Rick’s Good List. I’ve read the Asher (good) and the first few Xanth books (okay). You have plenty of fun reading ahead of you!


LOL, I’m so gonna call him Santa Rick from now on!


Um, probably not a wise idea…

Liked by 1 person

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FTC Stuff

some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.
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